The main benefit is sharing responsibility for local action with local people. Local Area Committees were very focused on political representation and have been replaced by Locality Partnerships which are more focused on local people and their needs and priorities. This enables changes in the relationship from paternalistic public sector organisations to local determination of priorities and the targeting of resources to where they are most needed.
Communities have choice and control over the extent of their involvement. The model allows people to determine their role in defining, designing and delivering solutions and, where appropriate, to be involved in the decisions around resource allocation. The early success with Participatory Budgeting makes a convincing case to the public of the sincerity of the CPPs’ intentions.
The Locality Partnerships’ governance structures have been agreed and the role for the refreshed Community Councils confirmed. Working together to provide better outcomes for people ensures North Ayrshire’s communities are valued - the voice of those communities is at the heart of everything we do.
The six Locality Partnerships, live from April 2016, are able to operate within a clear set of guidelines and reporting processes which will support them to grow and develop. A series of six local events is planned to launch the Partnership Boards and the next stage is to develop each of the Localities’ priorities and plans. The Participatory Budgeting feedback will be taken on board and changes will be made before the roll-out of more events across the remaining localities.
Local people welcome the chance to be involved and the CPP is now focused on providing them with training and support to make a sustainable contribution. For example, the CPP is setting up local social media channels through libraries and as these public/public partnerships develop, it is anticipated local groups will take this leadership role.